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The Situation Room

News/Business. Wolf Blitzer. Traditional reporting and online resources update international news. New.

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Us 24, Syria 16, United States 14, U.s. 14, Hagel 12, America 10, Chuck Hagel 9, Ocuvite 9, Clinton 9, Vermont 8, Brazil 8, Israel 8, Cnn 8, Geico 7, Obama 6, John Mccain 6, Joe Biden 6, Russia 6, Mccain 6, Egypt 5,
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  CNN    The Situation Room    News/Business. Wolf Blitzer. Traditional reporting  
   and online resources update international news. New.  

    January 28, 2013
    1:00 - 4:00pm PST  

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before i let you go, an 18 wheeler tries to make a sharp turn too fast, flips over on the other side, you see him, this guy on a motorcycle escapes being flattened, walks away without a scratch. unreal. got to go. i'm brook baldwin in new york. see you at 7:00 in the morning. i'm in for soledad on "starting point." "situation room" with wolf blitzer begins now. a powerful new push for immigration reform. can this one succeed where others have so often failed? i'll ask one of the senators behind the bipartisan plan, john mccain. he's here to talk about immigration, guns, the upcoming confirmation hearing for defense secretary nominee chuck hagel,
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john mccain live this hour. plus, a royal shake-up. a queen announces she's abdicating. her country is about to get a new king. i'm wolf blitzer. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com a new push to tackle one of the most contentious issues facing washington. just about 90 minutes or so ago, a bipartisan group of senators laid out a framework for an immigration reform bill. this comes as the white house is working on its own immigration bill and president obama will address the issue tomorrow in las vegas. the bipartisan senate plan includes a path to citizenship, but illegal immigrants will have to undergo a background check and pay a fine and back taxes before gaining legal status in the united states. all that is contingent on
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securing borders. the proposal provides for increased use of drones, more personnel and improved infrastructure and it would create an employment verification system and improve the process for admitting needed workers. cnn chief congressional correspondent dana bash and cnn chief white house correspondent jessica yellin are working the story. dana, the tone was pretty optimistic up on capitol hill today. >> it sure was but, you know, we have seen this movie before, you and i, wolf, and a lot of other people watching this issue go kind of up and down with the partisan wins. but this is something that is different this time. because of something very simple. and that is what happened in the last election to republicans. particularly mitt romney with the latino voters. he lost big time. and that's why when i asked senator mccain and others who were standing right here where i'm standing, half a dozen years ago, why this is different, that's why they answered that way.
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listen to this. senator kennedy stood with you and, senator mccain, you were standing with him, and he said 2007 is the year we must fix our broken system. we must strike while the iron is hot. what makes you think, why is this year different? >> elections. elections. >> the republican party is losing the support of our hispanic citizens. and we realize that there are many issues in which we thing we're in agreement with our hispanic sit steps but this is a preeminent issue for those citizens. >> wolf, it's important to underscore that we really did see some of the people who have been here before, with senator kennedy and others half a dozen years ago, but some newborn faces like marco rubio who of course is an up and coming conservative who has made this issue one of his own, because of the fact that he too is concerned about the way the republican party is perceived in the latino community. the important thing to keep in
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mind is this is just the beginning. there are some very divisive issues within the immigration concept that have not yet been worked out. for example, you mentioned at the beginning that this whole idea makes a path to citizenship contingent on border security. they've not worked out yet what the so-called metrics are for how they know the border is secure. that is very, very important. and the devil is, to use a cliche, in the details there. also goes for how they detyfine path to citizenship. >> jessica, you're getting some new information about the white house, the president is planning to propose, maybe as early as tomorrow, when he's in las vegas. >> the difference between the president's plan and what the senate has proposed is the path to citizenship for the 11 million immigrants who are here illegally. the senate plan, as you've explained, would require essentially officials verify that the u.s. border is secure before any of the immigrants,
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these immigrants can begin signing up for citizenship. the president's proposal would include no similar border security trigger, if you will. now, to help the president press his case, beginning next week, a grassroots coalition that the white house has actually been working with for months dating back to the president's -- the type the president was campaigning for re-election. the coalition will begin a campaign next week that's called bibles, badges and business. it's a group of church leaders, including evangelical pastor, law enforcement officials and small business leaders that will press for immigration reform on the local level, the grassroots level, and some of these grassroots leaders, as well as other advocates, con firmed to me that the white house has its own legislation, its own immigration reform bill, that it has been writing for some time now, very detailed, but it is unclear whether that will ever see the light of day, wolf, now
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that the senate has come out with its own proposal, wolf. >> dana, is it an accident that the senators were unveiling their plan on this day? >> no, it's not. it's because of what jessica was talking about. the president planning a major address on this issue tomorrow. i am told by multiple sources in both parties that these bipartisan senators wanted to get out today in order to signal to everybody out there, but perhaps most importantly, to republicans who may be on the fence about supporting a bipartisan effort, that this is independent of what the president is doing. that is incredibly important for republicans who don't want to touch anything that the president is involved in or even authoring. one thing i can tell you is jessica and i have been reporting that members of the congressional hispanic caucus went to the white house on friday and urged the president to please not unveil the bill he has prepared that jessica is talking about, for that reason, not to spook a lot of people, especially republicans. >> obviously, that didn't have a huge impact if the president's going to do it anyhow tomorrow.
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how are they feeling about all this over at the white house, jessica? >> wolf, we're not -- i'm not at all clear or convinced that the president will unveil his plan tomorrow. they may hold it back, for all we know, because the senate has gone first. for now, they are pleased and optimistic that the senate has moved forward with its proposal. for them, the more momentum on this issue, the better. at the very least, the president would have a bill in his back pocket if the senate's momentum eventually stalls. >> jessica yellin at the white house. dana bash on capitol hill. thank you. let's dig a little deeper with our chief national correspondent john king. you heard senator mccain, john, he was pretty blunt. it's about elections. the republicans did not do well with the hispanic voters last time around. remind our viewers about those numbers. >> even saying "not do well" is an understatement. there's legitimate policy concerns. when is the border secure? legal status, citizenship, is
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that amnesty? so we'll debate the policy. as senator mccain notes, the numbers don't lie. let's look at the presidential race. mitt romney got 27% of the latino vote. nationally in 2012. that was down from john mccain got 31% in 2000 and he lost. george w. bush proved the point. the republicans need to get about 40% or more to win a race for president. this isn't just about the presidency. look at a couple of senate races from 2012 right here. in the state of florida, democrats nearly 6 in 10 latino votes. in virginia, 62%. in arizona, 74%. we can go state, by state, by state. democrats sometimes above 60% in the latino vote. you look at the demographics. republicans can't sustain themselves. let's look at the house races. in 2012, 68%. again, nearly 7 in 10 latinos vote democratic. that's matching the numbers from 2008. 70% 7 70%. in 2004, it was 66%.
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yes, there are policy questions. senator mccain was honest enough to say, a lot of this being dictated by election results. >> the senate looks like they're working on a bipartisan way for comprehensive immigration reform. it's moving along in the senate. what about the house of representatives? >> i wouldn't get too far out ahead of yourself and say this will pass the house but there is clear changes under way. number one, here's the statement from lamar smith, republican, of texas. if we were having this conversation last year he was the chairman of the house judiciary committee. the main man in the committee hearings there. he said this morn, by granting amnesty, the senate proposal actually compounds the problem. if you support this bill, here's the good news for you, he's not the chairman anymore. here's the current chairman. bob goodlatte. so a much more open-minded noncommittal statement there. you want to know how the change
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is, that's bob goodlatte today. here's what he said then, the senate immigration bill actually rewards immigrants by giving them amnesty. you get a sense, the new committee chairman, they're not saying no. they're not saying yes but they're not saying no and that's a big difference. >> politics will be fascinating. we'll see what happens. john, thanks very much. we'll have much more on this coming up, including my interview with senator john mccain. he's part of that bipartisan group behind this comprehensive immigration plan. plus, that nightclub fire in brazil that killed more than 200 people, now we're getting word of arrests. see life in the best light. outdoors, or in. transitions® lenses automatically filter just the right amount of light. so you see everything the way it's meant to be seen.
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hill, a key senator in that group announcing comprehensive immigration reform, senator john mccain. thank you very much for coming in. >> thank you. >> there already are some critics, including republican critics, lamar smith, republican, of texas, he issued this statement. he said, when you legalize those who are in the country illegally, it cost taxpayers millions of dollars. costs american workers thousands of jobs. and encourages more illegal immigration. by granting amnesty, the senate proposal actually compounds the problem by encouraging more illegal immigration. i guess the question, is a pathway to citizenship amnesty? >> well, i don't think so, wolf. there's 11 million people who are in our country, living in the shadows. i don't believe that anyone has come up with a plan, if you wanted to deport them, not to mention the effect it would have on our economy. the majority of them have been
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in our country for over ten years. but the point is that they would have to -- our plan, they would have a legal status here. but then they would have to go through a long process, get in line behind everyone who is a green cardholder, pay tax, go through a background check, in order to be eligible for a path to citizenship. and so i hope that some my colleagues in the house will look at the provisions that we have and, by the way, they would have to pay back taxes, and they would have to pay for their path to citizenship. i do not see a scenario where it would cost money. what costs money now is when people are in this country illegally, show up in the emergency room, with illness, and that bill is paid for by the taxpayers. >> i guess the argument, the other side makes, lamar smith, among others, you tried this in
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thereagan administration. they say it only encouraged more illegal immigrants to try to come to the united states. >> well, i think that's a good point. i was one of those who voted for that amnesty for 3 million, but there was also the promise along with that, which was not kept, and that is to secure our borders. i believe we now have the technological capabilities, such as surveillance, such as drone, such as fences, that are surveilled, that we can, coupled with penalties for employers, coupled with a tamper-proof identification or social security card or others, that we cannot only prevent illegal immigration, but we can discourage it by telling people who want to come to this country illegally or showing them that they can't get a job once they get here. >> and you think it has a much better chance of winning republican support. you were pretty blunt at that news conference earlier in the day because of politics. i'll put some numbers up on the
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screen. 2012, romney got 27% of the latino vote. you got 31% in '08. 44% for bush in '04. our john king who studies these numbers closely, to win a presidential race, you need at least 40% of the latino vote. is politics behind this shift among so many republicans right now? >> well, i'm not sure if it's politics but it certainly is a realization that if we continue to polarize the latino/hispanic vote, that the demographics indicate that our chances for being in the majority are minimal. and so i'm sure that is a factor, because many of us believe that they're a natural c constituency of ours. this issue of illegal
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immigration has obviously been a major driving factor of the decision making of the hispanic voter. >> a piece in "the wall street journal" the other day, saying, the immigration system is like a jigsaw puzzle. if one or more pieces are out of what the puzzle makes no sense. to fix the system, congress must make sure all of the pieces fit together, logically and snugly. in other word, he wants a comprehensive package. he doesn't want any piecemeal legislation. are you with him on that? >> absolutely. that's why we set out a set of principles that covered literally all aspects of the issue, and we'll be coming forward with comprehensive legislation. let me emphasize, there will still be fights. there will still be battles. i am more confident now that i have ever been that we can reach an agreement and have a bill signed by the president. not the least of which reason is that more and more americans realize that we can't forever
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have 11 million people live in the shadows. we can't have children who were brought here by their parents long ago while they were young children remain in that status. and we understand, also, that the work and contributions to our economy that our hispanic citizens and noncitizens have provided is very important. >> i think you have the votes in the senate. but the question is the house. you think you have the votes in the house? >> i think you and i have known each other for many years. i've never counted votes. i've always done what is right. if that is rejected, i accept that. i think i have talents as a politician, but arm twisting isn't one of mine. >> let me ask you questions on unrelated matters. are you going to vote to confirm chuck hagel as the next secretary of defense? >> we're going to wait for the hearing on thursday. i'd like to see how he responds to the committee and my questions during the hearing.
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>> you had a chance to meet with him privately i take it the other day. did he give you the answers that you wanted to hear? >> well, we had a general discussion. there are are many specific questions that i had that i didn't ask and he hasn't answered. >> what about on guns right now? are you in favor of much more sweeping comprehensive universal background checks for people who want to purchase a gun? >> i'm certainly glad, and i think all of us are, to see where improvements can be made to keep the guns out of the hands of criminals. obviously, we'd have to look at the specific proposals. >> because right now if you're a criminal potentially and you have a record, you can go out and buy a gun. if you don't go to a store, you either go to a gun store or buy it from a private person, should that be made inpossible? >> if there are improvements that need to be made, as i said, to keep these weapons out of the hands of criminals, i'm sure all
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americans, including the nra, would agree with them, i would think. >> what about putting a limit on clips, magazine clips and an assault weapons ban, assault-type weapons ban? >> i've not seen how that would improve the situation at all. >> meaning as far as the clips or the assault weapon? >> either. >> so you don't see a need for tighter legislation? in other words, reducing the number of bullets, for example, from 100 down to 10, which is what senator feinstein's recommending? >> i think the burden of proof has to be on those who want such a thing. a second thing is i would point out in norway where a mass killing took play they had the strictest gun control laws in the world. handguns are the ones that commit the majority of crimes in our metropolitan cities in america now. perhaps we're chasing after the wrong rabbit. >> what, if anything, would you do as far as tightening up, if you want to tighten up, guns,
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gun control in the country right now? >> obviously, tighten up controls in either way to keep the guns out of the hands of criminals, including looking seriously at the so-called, quote, gun show loophole, looking at ways of identifying people who, despite tendencies that could lead to this kind of mayhem that we have seen with these mass murders. educating society about how guns should and could and must be used in a safe and secure manner. there's lots of things we can do. lots conversation. but to think banning assault weapons is going to stop how many murders that just took place in chicago over the weekend defies the facts. >> one final question before i let you go, senator, sarah palin, she and fox have terminated their exclusive arrangement. i'm not sure what she's going to be doing next. do you have any clue if she wants to get back into politics, stay a bpundit? what she wants to do next?
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>> i know from all my travels that sarah still has a very sizable following in america. and i'm proud of the work she has, continues to do, and i'm not sure exactly what her plans are, but i'm sure she will be a major factor in american political scene, and i'm still and always proud of her. >> senator, thanks so much for coming in. we've invited sarah palin to be a guest here on the show now that she's no longer, has an exclusive arrangement with fox and hopefully she'll say yes and we'd love to have her on the show if she wants to do that. >> i'm sure she will, like me, look eagerly at the opportunity of chatting with you. >> i'm not so sure about that, but you're always very generous in your time. let's see if sarah palin wants to be as generous. appreciate it very much, senator, thanks very much. >> thanks, wolf. we're following developments in that deadly nightclub fire that killed more than 200 people. we have new detail, ils of arre. if there was a pill
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brazilian authorities are containing three people as they investigate a horrific nightclub fire. lisa sylvester is monitoring some of the top stories in "the situation room." hi, lisa. >> police say they are holding them temporarily to clarify what happened. we know the band's pyrotechnics show caused fire in the insulation, causing that fire. we will have more live in our next hour. president obama phoned israeli prime minister netanyahu today. he congratulated the israeli leader on his party's victory
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last week's elections. the president repeated his commitment to the deep and enduring bonds between the u.s. and israel. and we are getting new details about the condition of former israeli prime minister ariel sharon who suffered a devastating stroke seven years ago. here's cnn's sara sidner. >> reporter: one thing is clear, doctors and sharon's family are excited about what a new test has revealed. doctors and scientists from the u.s. and israel used a high-powered mri on mr. sharon. and the scan showed significant brain activity in response to external stimuli. mr. sharon has been in the hospital for seven years after suffering is a brain hemorrhage in 2006. now, for year, the public has been under the impression that the storied israeli political powerhouse was in a coma or vegetative state. i spoke with the doctor who said sharon actually has had a low level or intermediate level of consciousness throughout the
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years which means he was not on life support or comatose all this time but somewhere in between consciousness and comatose and doctors don't know where exactly on the spectrum. when the new test was performed, everyone in the room went silent with astonishment because the brain imaging shows it is possible he can hear and understand what's going on around him. when his son spoke, his brain scan showed high activity in the proper location and was different than when he heard a stranger's voice. now, this all came about partly because in 2011 mr. sharon's sons who have been by his side, taking shifts visiting him at the hospital through these year, believed their father could recognize and understand things, even though he couldn't respond ordinarily. but they had no proof. the results thfs sc s results on is giving them hope.
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it could signal new and important information about people with diminished brain capacity. >> lisa, pretty amazing story. seven years and all of a sudden they sense a little bit of movement. we're going to be speaking with dr. sanjay gupta later about this. >> it's a fascinating story, there's no question. a very hopeful story as well. as sara mentioned, there are other people in this situation so perhaps people who are in commas, perhaps they're more aware than we realize, so i'm looking forward to what dr. san jaw gu jay gupta has to say. >> thanks, lisa. defense secretary nominee chuck hagel is getting ready for what could be a difficult round of confirmation hearings. our strategy session guests have very different points of view on the man bob woodward calls the president's soul mate on issues of war and peace. and a choice.ns with n take advil, and maybe have to take up to four in a day.
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or take aleve, which can relieve pain all day with just two pills. good eye.
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let's get right to our strategy session. the former bush white house press secretary ari fleisher. also a consultant and board member of the jewish coalition. also joining us, democratic strategist hilary rosen. let's talk about the confirmation hearings. thursday for chuck hagel to be the nation's next defense secretary. bob woodward has a piece in "the washington post" today about a conversation he says hagel had with the president early in '09 right after the bush administration in which hagel said this, according to an account that hagel later gave, he told obama, we are at a time when there is a new world order. we don't control it. you must question everything. any assumption ten years old is out of date. you need to question our role. you need to question the military. you need to question what we are
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using the military for. it sounds to me like that makes a lot of sense, what hagel was telling the president right after he took office, given some of the blunders that occurred during the previous eight years. >> wolf, i don't disagree with any of that. i think that's the type of fresh thinking every president should do. what used to work doesn't always work. i do worry the president's response to it is the creation of vacuums around the world and his belief that america's use of its influence leads to former damage around the world. that seems to be the president's policies globally and especially the midwest. but looking at the hearing itself, you got to say chuck hagel goeses into it, presumed he will pass, unless something comes up and he says something wrong. a lot of pressure on him to explain his long-standing record at that hearing. >> what do you think, hilary, does he have this basically wrapped up or is the burden of proof on him to answer these tough questions for some of the votes he took, some of
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statements he made while he was a united states senator? >> oh, i think he's going to be confirmed. i think he ought to be. he's the president's choice. i think that on some of the issues that people have raised concerns about, he's working for the president's policies, not his own. and i like the fact that he is a decorated war hero himself. going into a pentagon badly in need of more reform, more budget cutting, and who better to do that, than someone with the kind of credibility with the troops that chuck hagel has. >> chuck schumer, speaking of chucks, another chuck, ari, chuck schumer, as you know, a very strong supporter of israel, very tough on iran and its nuclear program. he had a private meeting with hagel, emerged strongly endorsing hagel, saying he'll vote to confirm him. you read that long statement that schumer put out on what he was told by hagel during the
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course of that private meeting. i rey sum that's reassuring. i assume that's reassuring to you. is it reassuring enough for republicans to vote to confirm him? >> no, i think hagel has broken the land speed record for the most apologies on a way to a hopeful confirmation. i've never heard of a nominee who has apologized to so many different people for so many different positions he's took over his career in order for him to get confirmed. i suspect this is more a confirmation conversion than anything heartfelt from hagel. that's why he's saying this. explaining away everything. if i were a senator, what i would do with hagel is keep my questions very short, make no speeches and make hagel talk. i think that could do the greatest damage. specifically, i would ask him why he sent letters in support of israel are stupid. and let him explain that. he's refused to sign many letters that support israel. his explanation was these letters are stupid. what does that mean?
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let chuck hagel explain it. >> you have an answer to that, hilary? >> i think what ari is saying is out of context. he obviously has sent several letters himself in support of israel. he sent letters to the secretary-general for instance about iran and concerns about protecting israel. so i think that hagel has a record he can talk about. i don't think he's going to talk himself into trouble the way republicans like ari are hoping. i think he's going to talk about the president's agenda and why he's going to be a good steward for the defense department. it's, you know, i, myself, would rather be having a fight over susan rice's confirmation than chuck hagel's but having said that, i think that chuck hagel is the president's choice. he's got a good record. he will stand on. it's a record of not going along to get along. and that's the kind of leader that the president likes. that's what we need in the defense department i think. >> i want to move on and talk about hillary clinton and the
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joint interview she had with the president. are you disappointed, hilary, that the president was willing to fight for chuck hagel as defense secretary but not fight for susan rice to be secretary of state? >> sure. >> okay. just wanted to make sure i heard you right. let's talk about hillary clinton, joe biden and the president of the united states. here's a clip from the "60 minutes" interview. >> you guys, in it the press, are incorageable. i was literally inaugurated four days ago. >> right. >> and you're talking about elections four years from now. >> i am, as you know, i am still secretary of state, so i'm out of politics, and i'm forbidden even from hearing these questions. i think that, you know, look, obviously, the president and i care deeply about what's going to happen for our country in the future. and i don't think, you know, either he or i can make predictions about what's going
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to happen tomorrow or for the next year. >> hilary, who do you think he would prefer to succeed him, biden or hillary clinton? >> sofie's choice, wolf. two of his favorites. i think the president is hoping he is not going to have to choose between the the two. they'll work it out among themselves. because he has very deep affection for both joe biden and hillary clinton. and, you know, my guess is that we're going to get to a point in a democratic primary where it's not going to be, you know, the president won't have to choose. >> hillaary rosen, ari fleisher thanks. coming up, the boy scouts of america now rethinking its stand on gay scouts and leaders. plus, a frightening snowmobile accident. twins. i didn't see them coming. i have obligations. cute obligations, but obligations. i need to rethink the core of my portfolio.
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bipartisan group unveiled an immigration reform plan today includes a pathway to citizenship. cnn's lisa sylvester showing us what's at stake at least for one family in the region. this could be hugely significant. >> wolf, you know this, immigration reform has been something that has been debated, defeated, debated again. but this year may be the the year for action on capitol hill. the november election changed the dynamic. republicans lost the latino vote in the presidential race in a big way. president seems ready to make good on a campaign promise. so for one family, now they can only hope. a close-knit family always worried they could be torn
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apart. marcella and her husband are undocumented immigrants. her baby is a u.s. citizen. her brother just received temporary legal status. they all want to stay in the u.s. the place they call home. >> this is my country. i was teenager when i came here. >> reporter: when she and her brother came to the united states from el salvador, she was 16 and he was 12. they went to school here. graduated from high school. but have always lived in the shadows. ricardo is a premed student in college. as a teenager, he was diagnosed with bone cancer. several operations later, he was cancer free. now he dreams of one day becoming a doctor. >> helping people is, helping folks is what i always wanted. especially after my cancer. like, i think i owe people, i owe the american people back for giving me my life back. >> reporter: what stands in his way is is his legal stas tus. for now, he is free from the threat of deportation under the obama deferred action program. but he wants to become a
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citizen.ardo joined several groups lobbying for comprehensive reform. now with talk of a new framework, he is optimistic. >> what is necessary is the reform with a path to citizenship. we are pretty much americans. even though we are undocumented, i call ourselves undocumented americans. >> reporter: but there are many in the country who may take issue with that. 43% of americans polled, according to a cnn national exit poll, say the u.s. government should deport illegal immigrants and stop more from coming in. what is your response to that? >> i mean, it's clear that even government has stated, that's not even an option. these are people who are contributing to our economy. these are people who are lived here like probably for, like, 10, 15 years, 20 years. i don't know. these are people who are truly americans. >> reporter: you can see why the
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i grags iss immigration issue is so hard. >> i have a baby and i don't know what happens if they deport me. >> reporter: living in fear and an impossible choice if she faced deportation. leave her child here in the united states where he could have a better life or stay with her and have him go to a country that neither of them knows. and on the front door of that family's home, two small american flags. ricardo campos plans to go back to capitol hill to continue serving as an activist. >> there's a moment right now. they've tried several times over the past years. this might be the moment to pass this. >> in particular because you're hearing a very different tone from conservatives, which we have not seen in the past. again, the november elections, that was a big thing, when you saw those numbers, of just the low turnout, in terms of the latino vote for republicans. they all went, practically 70%, went for president obama. so that's part of the consciousness, part of the debate now. >> when you saw rubio and
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schumer all together on this, it's a dramatic moment. thank you very much. a desperate and dangerous escape from a bloody civil war. >> they told me they left everything behind. left everything in their house behind. all they brought is the clothes on their back and the clothes in this bag. five children, his wife. everything else, back in syria where he says he can't return. ♪ [ male announcer ] this is karen and jeremiah. they don't know it yet, but they're gonna fall in love, get married, have a couple of kids, [ children laughing ] move to the country, and live a long, happy life together where they almost never fight about money.
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syria's civil war sparked a refugee crisis as hundreds and hundreds of thousands of people have fled. the jourp journey is as dangerous as it is desperate. cnn's mohammed jamjoom joins us live.
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this is an awful situation, mohammed. >> reporter: that's right, wolf. it's a mass exodus of syrians fleeing for safety into northern jordan. at least 40,000 syrians have crossed over just since january 1st. now, we went to jordan's border with syria. we were just a few feet away from southern syria, witnessing a harrowing nighttime escape of syrians crossing over into jordan. darkness their only cover. families are fleeing for their lives. in an escape as treacherous as this one, you walk if you're old enough, no matter how young you may be. a mother's arms are reserved for the babies. her hands for whatever possessions she can carry. this group of syrians has just made the extremely dangerous journey into jordan. they're being led to safety just over this hill by one of the jordanian border guards. he's showing them where they need to go.
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lights aren't allowed. they're still too close. it's far too risky. some of the adults are relieved. but most the children are simply stunned. they told me they left everything behind. left everything in their house behind. all they brought is the clothes on their back and the clothes in this bag. has five children, his wife. everything else, back in syria where he says he can't return. this 80-year-old woman wallace car was carried across. she hated leaving home. the first day, they are killed my nephew, she says. the second day, they killed my niece. third day, my cousin. fourth day, another cousin. temporary shelter at hand. papers are being processed. as soldiers distribute food. a respite from hunger. yet some are too tired to eat.
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many recount their harrowing experiences. when we first got on the road, says this woman, it was extremely scary. i mean, we saw death all around. with over 350,000 syrians having crossed over since the beginning of the conflict, neighboring jordan is bursting at the seams, yet their borders will remain open and their border guard ready to help, despite the difficulties. we welcome them on the border, says the commander of jordan's border guard, and then we take them to a safer area. then we start treating the wounded and the injured. extremely cold temperatures only exacerbate the misery. on this perilous pilgrimage that's nowhere near over. loaded on to a bus that will take them to their final destination, a camp, where around 70,000 of their fellow citizens already reside. syrian families so grateful to
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have been ushered to safety, still absolutely shocked at the realization they are now refugees. wolf, it's hard to put into words just how desperate the situation is for these refugees. what i can say is many of them told us that it would have been easier for them to die than to have left syria and made this journey. wolf. >> mohammed, can the jordanians really continue to accommodate the flood of refugees? >> reporter: well, wolf, they say they're committed to keeping the border open. that they feel it's their duty to try to help the syrians fleeing such horrific violence. but at the same time, i've spoken to many officials this past week including the foreign minister who said, look, there's already an economic crisis going on in jordan. there is really taxing the resources of this country. they've gotten hundreds of millions of dollars so far from international organizations and bodies and countries but they're
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going to need a lot more to meet the desperate needs of these fleeing refugees. >> mohammed jamjoom joining us from jordan, mohammed, thanks very much. up next, which country is now facing a royal shake-up. oil changes at meineke are always a great deal.
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a royal shake-up is looming in the netherlands. queen beatrix announced she will abdicate on the 30th, 33 years to the day since she ascended to the dutch throne. the country will have its first king in more than a century. cnn royal correspondent max foster has more. >> reporter: wolf, in a televised address, beatrix said her country needed a new generation. as the monarchy there marks its 200th anniversary. prince willem alexander, the eldest of her three sons, will become king on the 30th of april. it's a surprise but not shocking in the netherlands because her mother and grandmother both be an da it's ka eabdicated, so there's a tradition of stepping down, rather than reigning till death. >> translator: i'm not stepping down, because the role would become too difficult, but because i feel the responsibility of this land should lie in the hands of a new
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generation. >> reporter: like other european monar monarchs, the dutch queen has a ceremonial role and stays out of politics. the prime minister described her as an icon of the netherlands. she's always been there, he said. and this is a queen who has suffered during her reign. her second son still in a coma following a skiing accident last year. beatrix is one of three long-serving european queens. like her british and danish counterparts, she enjoys high approval ratings. something their sons will endeavor to live up to, wolf. >> max foster, thank you. you're in "the situation room." arrests are made after a horrific nightclub fire killing more than 200 people in brazil. the boy scouts of america reconsidering a controversial ban on gay scouts and leaders.
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and a teenage athlete helps persuade the maker of gatorade to drop a chemical additive. we want to welcome viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com one after another, the funeral processions began today in the southern brazilian city of santa maria. the entire nation is mourning, a day after a catastrophe nightclub fire that killed 231 people. the blaze erupted after a band used fireworks in their show and survivors describe a panic scramble for the exits. >> translator: i was at the door of the club as soon as the fire started. i saw people shouting, "fire,
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fire." when i realized there was fire, i rushed out of there. when i was trying to get out, the staff stopped me. i yelled "fire, fire" but the security guards were not realizing what was going on. i think many of them thought there were just riots or the people were trying to get out without paying. >> the exact cause of the fire is still unclear. what is clear is that the tragedy will haunt survivors for years to come. let's go live to cnn's reporter in santa maria. four more arrests today so where does this investigation stand? >> reporter: wolf, basically, as you mentioned, the big news today are those four arrests. two of the people we're talking about were owners of the club where this huge inferno took place. two were members of the band that was playing when the fire started. now, there was a pyrotechnics show. part of the investigation is really going after that. was it the pyrotechnics show that started this blaze.
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did any of the sort of hand devices that these band members used, could they have been involved. so that's what people were focused on today. you'll also notice around me, i'm surrounded by quite a big crowd. that's because we're just up the street from the nightclub. kiss, as it's called. and it's the end of monday. this is -- this whole town knows about this tragedy. they've all come here to just see what's going on. we've got hundreds around us. there's going to be a walk through town in sole desolidari, in support for peace. also curious people, wanting to see what this club looks like after so much destruction and so much loss of life. >> i had heard earlier there were hundreds more people crowded into that nightclub than had been allowed for, if you will. it was really overcrowded and some of the exits were simply blocked because they were afraid people would try to leave without paying their bills.
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what are you hearing about that? >> reporter: wolf, actually, the situation is pretty shocking. we got a close-up look at the club. there is only one exit. one very small door. it's a building that's got two buildings on either side. there are no lateral exits. there's no rear exit. there's just that one exit. so even if they had an evacuation plan, you have to wonder, how do you get 2,000 people out of a club at midnight in the case of an emergency? i can't imagine any evacuation plan would be sufficient. beyond that, there are other questions as you mentioned. some of the survivors said when the fire first started they were blocked. they suspect the security guards thought they were trying to get out without paying. because in brazil, you basically keep a tally of your drinks and when you're ready to leave the club, you pay. of course, there are plenty of attempts to sneak out. that didn't last for long apparently. and then there's also just the question of whether or not this club was even up to -- current
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with its license. those are some issues being looked into. >> i suppose a lot of people in brazil are also worried about their reputation. this is a country that's supposed to host the world cup, host the olympic games. this must be an enormous, enormous embarrassment, as it should be. >> reporter: well, right now, wolf, to be fair, i think people are more focused on the victims, on the survivors. the president cut short a big summit in chile where latin american leaders were meeting with european leaders. she flew back to santa maria, the southern most tip of brazil, to be with the families during this very difficult time. the focus was really on just getting through this difficult moment, trying to bring the country together. and it wasn't a political moment, wolf. >> it wasn't now but i suspect
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it will be. thanks very much. we'll touch base with you later as well. the tragedy in brazil is similar to a nightclub fire that killed 100 people here in the united states in rhode island about a decade or so ago. it's bringing fresh pain to survivors of that blaze. mary snow's joining us now from the scene from rhode island. what's going on there? this must be so shocking to folks where you are, mary. >> reporter: it really is, wolf. one survivor call also the parallels between the two fires frightening. there were vows made here back in 2003 that what happened here would never be forgotten and there would be lessons learned. you can sense people's disbelief. with one woman asking us, is anyone listening. the images are haunting from santa maria, brazil, where more than 230 young people were killed, trapped inside a burning nightclub after a pyrotechnics
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disaster. it has anna asking how could this happen again. her daughter, pamela, was among 100 people killed in 2003 when a crowded rhode island nightclub became an inferno. there, too, pyrotechnics were used. >> it was overcrowded. the same thing in rhode island. how the security men wouldn't let anybody out. same thing over here. bodies piled up in front of the exit doors. same thing here. >> reporter: foam used on doors to mute the club's noise was highly flammable. >> i made it to the middle of the club to where the front door was. >> reporter: survivor gina spoke to us at the site where the club called the station burnt to the ground. crosses now stand, marking the victims. among them, gina's fiance. she last saw him as they ran to the club's front entrance. >> fred's hand was on the middle of my back and he pushed me and screamed go. when i turned around to find him, all i saw were people's
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heads on fire and the ceiling melting. what i call black rain. and he was gone. that fast. that fast. and it's been a long road. >> reporter: that road, says gina, includes 54 surgeries after suffering burns over 40% of her body including her head. she now wears a wig. she's worked with groups around the country to push for tougher fire codes. rhode island did strengthen its laws. two brothers who owned the club pleaded no contest to 100 counts each of involuntary manslaughter. one of them spent time in prison. but russo worries that complacency sets in quickly. >> how does this happen ten years later? it's tragic. those families and those lives are just beginning. they don't even -- they have no idea what their next few years are going to be like. but we need them to know they're not alone. >> reporter: now, february 20th marks the tenth anniversary of
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this horrific fire. a permanent memorial is slated to be built. the hope is the lessons learned from this tragedy won't be ignored. wolf. >> hope so, hope it won't be ignored. got to learn from all these tragedies so they don't happen again. mary, thank you. nightclubs have been the setting for numerous catastrophes around the world. 156 people died in perm, russia, back in 2009. a fire in buenos aires argentina claimed 194 lives in 2004 and 309 people died in china in 2000. here in the united states, 165 people were killed at the beverly hills supper club in south gate, kentucky, back in 1977. there were no fire detectors or sprinklers. they weren't required at the time. the deadliest nightclub blaze in u.s. history killed 492 people at boston's coconut grove nightclub back in 1942. the cause remains unknown.
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and 209 people died at the rhythm nightclub in naches, mississippi, back in 1940. after monthses of protests, the boy scouts of america now weighing a change to a policy against allowing openly gay members. if you thought the decade or so since 9/11 was bad, wait till you see the next ten years. we got a very grim warning from the british foreign secretary william haig. he's here in "the situation room."ve exactly how they want. with scottrade's online banking, i get one view of my bank and brokerage accounts with one login... to easily move my money when i need to. plus, when i call my local scottrade office, i can talk to someone who knows how i trade. because i don't trade like everybody. i trade like me. i'm with scottrade. (announcer) scottrade. awarded five-stars from smartmoney magazine.
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after a wave of protests, a huge change in policy towards gays and lesbians may, may be looming over at the boy scouts of america, but will it pass muster with churches and other local sponsors of scout troops? cnn's chris lawrence has been working the story. what's going on here? >> reporter: it looks like the boy scouts are going to take
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this huge decision on whether to allow gay troops into scouting and push it from the national level down to the local level. now, that's got the potential to possibly free up thousands of groups, to make the decision that's best for their individual troops. it's also got the potential to blow up in everyone's face and end up with nobody happy. the boy scouts of america is actively considering a change that could affect millions of families. removing its national ban on gays and lesbians. the national director says the policy change under discussion would allow the religious, civic or educational organizations that oversee and deliver scouting to determine how to address this issue. the boy scouts would not, under any circumstances, dictate a position to units, members or parents. but the change means those charter groups could make their own policy. about 70% of scout troops are afillated with a church or
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religious group. catholic and mormon groups alone account for well over 600,000 scouts across the country. >> we would much rather that the boy scouts have adopted a national nondiscrimination policy, but this is definitely a step in that right direction. >> reporter: the boy scouts won a narrow supreme court decision in 2000 which allowed the organization to ban gays. ohio mom jennifer torele was ousted as a den mother because she's a lesbian. the boy scouts have been under attack from gay rights advocates ever since. the group since it was pressured to change that policy because it didn't fit the national position. if the national restriction is removed, local groups could set their own policy. and that could be key, because, you know, back in 2000 when this came up before the supreme court, attorneys for the mormon church basically said if they were forced to accept gay
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members, they'd pull their support. that's what the boy scouts have feared. if these church groups pull out, it would decimate their support. you know, you've got to have a sponsor to be a boy scout. there are some nonreligious sponsors like the american legion, but not nearly as many as the churches provide. the boy scout's position up to this point has always been any issue dealing with sexual orientation is best discussed at the family level, not dealt with in scouting. but this really has the potential to really get down to the local level and let these groups make their own decisions on what's best for their particular scouts. >> could be a jor, major change for the boy scouts. thanks very much, chris lawrence. another victory in the battle to free mali from islamist militants. lisa sylvester is in the situation room. what's latest? >> a french defense ministry spokesman confirm french and
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mali forces now control the critical city of timbuktu. the united states has stepped up its role, conducting refueling missions, as well as airlift and intelligence support. the family of a new york woman who went missing in turkey is now pleading for help and clinging to hope she is still alive. the mother of two traveled alone to istanbul in the beginning of the month after the friend who was supposed to go with her canceled. she hasn't been heard of since last week. her husband was set to arrive in istanbul today and he says it was her first trip outside of the united states. iranian state television is reporting the country has successfully launched a monkey into space. the vessel carrying the live animal reportedly reached the desired altitude and speed, performed all of the scientific tests, then returned to earth, bringing the money back with it. and watch what happens when this snowmobile rider loses his seat during a stunt.
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oh, my gosh, look at that, wow. all right. he is okay. but as you can imagine, it was a very scary moment. you see there, when the snowmobile plowed into the spectators at the x games in aspen, colorado, last night. the only injury was a boy who hit his knee on a parked truck when his father yanked him out of the way. there goes that snowmobile. into the crowd. you can see people running like crazy. >> could have been a disaster. thank god nobody was seriously hurt. >> just one minor injury. the rider is okay. golly. >> so lucky there. >> looks like it could have almost hit him. lucky to be alive, wolf. >> all right. thank you. the senate could approve tens of billions of dollars in sandy aid just minutes from now. will it be enough to do anything anytime soon? hell, it's basically been
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members are expected to vote on a $50 million aid package for thousands devastated by superstorm sandy. after weeks of debate in the house that's caused widespread outrage. months after the storm, new york staten island is still struggling to recover. cnn national correspondent jason carroll is joining us with more. still pretty awful, isn't it, jason? >> reporter: it's terrible, wolf. i know a lot of people in this neighborhood are going to be
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watching very closely to see what happens within the next few minutes on the senate floor. if you take a look, you can see, there's still piles of debris here. this neighborhood from the homes that have been detstroyed or demolished. i was out here in november, december. the thing that's so depressing is much of this neighborhood still looks the same. one change i've seen is finally this house here on the corner has been deemed unsafe. it will possibly be demolished. a woman whoive ls down street. a woman who lives down street, her son painted this mural to try to bring some life into the neighborhood. really what they need is money. i spoke to a woman earlier this afternoon who talked about the frustration that she has been dealing with in order to try to get her life back open track. so basically, you know, a lot of the homes in this area, you've been sitting, you've been waiting. what has the wait been like, in terms of trying to determine if you will receive the financial aid and if that aid will reach you? >> hell. it's basically been hell.
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we've been living hell for three months. not knowing. the unknown is the worst. not knowing where the next step needs to be taken. we pay our taxes. we pay our flood insurance. we do everything that we need to do. my husband can tell you, whenever there's a tragedy some place else, i'm the first one to write a check. now i feel like i never gave enough. because i see what we're going through. so, you know, it's just a matter of a simple red sticker. that's all it is. >> reporter: chati told me when the president came to the neighborhood she had a chance to speak to him very briefly. she said he put his arms around her and told her the aid was coming. she said she feels as though he's done a good job. she feels as though the aid is still not here for her. not only for her but there are some 2,000 families in the new york city area alone who are still waiting for that aid. this is the 11th hour for many of them. so once again, as i said a
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little earlier, they'll be watching very closely to see what happens on the senate floor in just a few minutes. >> the senate will pass it. the house has. the president will sign it. that money, tell those folks out there, will soon be on the way. jason, thanks very much. dozens are dead as violence sweeps across egypt right now, two years after the revolution. does this signal the so-called end of the arab spring? i'll talk about that and more. the british foreign secretary will hague is here in washington, here in "the situation room." if there was a pill
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clashes broke out for a fourth day in egypt after a state of emergency was declared by president mohamed morsi. one person was shot dead in cairo. protesters defied curfews and other cities as anti-morsi demonstrators fought with his supporters and with police. dozens have been killed.
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hundreds injured since friday. cnn's reza seha is in cairo. >> reporter: more clashes throughout the day, also clashes in the city of sue ez, and an emotional day in port saeed. that's where thousands turned out in funeral processions to mourn several protesters who were killed over the weekend. an incredibly sum mutumultuous n egypt. now emergency law and curfews in three cities along the suez canal. he first delivered a stern warning to the people of egypt. warning them not to protest anymore. and then he announced the emergency rules in the city of suez, port saeed and another city. the announcement after a weekend of dead lie violence. the president saying he had no choice but to get tough.
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>> translator: those who attack civilians and like to disturb the security of this nation, we will deal with them severely. they will know, repeat, everyone will know that this nation is capable to protect this nation's peoples and institutions. >> reporter: the emergency law and the curfews will last for 30 days, according to the president. police will have extended powers. people will not be as free to protest, if at all. remember, egypt lived under emergency law for more than 40 years nationwide. the question now, how will egyptians, many of whom have lost their fear to protest, react? will they heed the president's call or will this declaration fuel their outrage? the president has called for dialogue with the opposition factions. today, those opposition groups rejected his call, saying it's a waste of time. they're demanding the president to take responsibility for the deaths of protesters. amend the constitution. change the government. no sign of the president heeding those demands and no sign of
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these two sides talking. wolf. >> joining us now, the british foreign secretary william hague. thanks very much for joining us. let's talk about the arab spring. egypt, libya, tunisia, all of north africa, throughout the midwes middle east. it looks like potentially it's turning out to be a nightmare. is it? >> i think it's never been the work of a couple of years. clearly, it's the work of a generation, change in the arab world. countries that don't have a particular model to follow, you know, there is no -- it's not like the end of communism in europe where eastern european countries knew they wanted to be like western european countries. these countries have to find their own model of democracy. >> looking back, was it a mistake to dump mubarak? >> the egyptian people dumped mubarak? but a lot of the european countries said it was time for him to go.
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>> well, in the face of revolution in egypt. none of these countries, can we decide who is in charge. this is about people taking charge of their own destiny. >> i've heard from other arab countries like the united arab emirates or the saudis, others in the region, the kuwaitis, they were pretty upset that the west moved as quickly in dumping mubarak as it did. >> there is no west, the united states, the united kingdom, whoever it can be, can impose on these countries leaders who they don't want anymore. what we've seen is that in so many of these countries autocratic government doesn't work. they wanted to throw that off. now, we've got to keep faith with millions of people who want what we want for our countries. they want economic freedom. they want political choice. they want dignity for their countries. and we mustn't lose faith in them just because there are a lot of difficulties along the way. >> is it more difficult than you imagined it would be? >> it's -- i think i've always said this would be a process,
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taking a long time. and it's the spin-offs in termsl security challenges, have certainly mounted. but we have to be ready for a turbulent time in world affairs. we're seeing this demand for economic progress at the same time as the spread of information in the world has gone as never before. this ignite these demands for change include in the arab world. >> here's what you said, quoted in "the times" of london, saying, the world will be a more dangerous place over the next decade or two than the last decade or two. that includes 9/11. >> i think that's right. i think the challenges we face are enormous. >> we should expect more 9/11s? >> no, no, i'm not saying we should expect more -- we must always be on our guard against terrorism. never be complacent about terrorism. if you look just this year at the crises we face over the iranian nuclear program, the
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situation in syria, in which 60,000 people have already died, the middle east peace process is at a crucial moment. this is just 2013. that's without mentioning what's happening in the region of africa. the world has become a less stable place. that's nobody's fault. it's something we have to deal with and we have to face up to. and in facing up to that, the alliance between the united kingdom and the united states and our other allies will remain of fundamental importance. >> that's a somber pessimistic assessment, that the next 10, 20 years, will be even worse internationally than the last 10 or 20 years. we've seen horrendous situations unfolding. you say brace for even a worst situation. >> i think international affairs will be more difficult over the next 20 years. we face a huge challenge of terrorism. rticularly after 9/11. but it was in the last 20 years we also saw the end of the cold war.
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we saw the end of all of that tension in world affairs. and now, as power becomes more diffused, as there are more centers of decisionmaking in the world, it becomes morse difficult to police the world. >> who's to blame for this? >> nobody's to blame for this -- >> somebody must be to blame, there must be bad guys out there, somebody has to be to blame. >> there are plenty of bad guys. this is the way the world has changed. there are more centers of decisionmaking. it's harder for any one country to impose its will. sometimes the united nations security council as we're seeing with russia over syria is not willing to unite in the way that it ought to, to shoulder its responsibilities. and when that happens, then you get a conflict out of control. and that's what we're facing in syria now. >> let's talk about syria. president obama in an interview in "the new republican" says in a situation like syria, i have to ask, can we make a difference in that situation. would a military intervention have an impact. now, in the interview, he doesn't answer those questions. do you have an answer to those
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questions? >> i don't think we should rule anything out. but clearly, the way we've all answered that question so far is that we haven't got, first of all, the legal authority for a military intervention or anything approaching a military intervention. >> because the security council has -- >> bauecause the security council -- >> so your waiting for the security council act to save lives in syria? >> no, we are saving thousands of lives with that aid. we're giving practical but not lethal support. we're doing a lot in syria. what we can't bring about is the resolution of the conflict. the diplomat unity that would say to them all in syria, you have to do this or else. >> is that because russia will use its veto? so you're blaming russia right now for failure to intervene to save lives? >> i'm blaming -- i've often blamed russia and china for their failure to reach agreement
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on the security council on a political solution. that absence of political solution is leading to this continued conflict. we have to think about it in that way. there is no military-only solution to the situation in syria. we still have to work for a transitional government in syria, for a political settlement in syria. >> basically for the time being, we should just throw up our hands and whatever happens between bashar al assad and the rebels, there can be another million refugees -- >> we have to continue giving more of the help i've talked about and continuing to say to russia in particular, look, the longer this goes on, the more all the things you're most worried about are going to come to pass. extremists taking a foothold. foreign fighters going to syria. greater instability in the whole region. at some point, you have to see that and unite with us on diplomatic solution. if we can't do that, i don't think our policy can remain static. we mustn't rule out any option. any option at all. given we don't know how massive
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the dimensions of this crisis could become. >> foreign secretary, you've got a full agenda. i'm very worried. you make me even more pessimistic. if the next 10 or 20 years are going to be worst than the last 10 or 20 -- >> there are solutions. the challenges and dangeres are greater but it is possible to find our way through them. >> thanks so much for coming in. >> thank you. >> good luck. >> thank you. from ice and freezing temperatures to a balmy 60 degrees, all in the span of a few days. up next, what's behind the bizarre weather much of the united states is experiencing right now? so...how'd it go? well, dad, i spent my childhood living with monks learning the art of dealmaking. you've mastered monkey-style kung fu? no. priceline is different now. you don't even have to bid. master hahn taught you all that? oh, and he says to say (translated from cantonese) "you still owe him five bucks."
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shaping up to be a bizarre
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wild week of weather here in the united states. cnn meteorologist alexandria steele joining us to explain. >> extreme is the name of the game. we have seen it and have it in spades. want to show you the big picture. what's going to happen, we've got such extreme elements and they will come together tomorrow to create a severe weather outbreak. this cold arctic air, check, coming down from canada. and of course the arctic. also, we've got incredibly warm southerly air and very humid for january. recent history, this is the most humid january air we've seen come up from the south. where these two air masses are meeting, that's where the explosion of severe weather will be. we've got a lot of wind energy with this storm. the jet stream, which is this, this is about 30,000 feet above us, usually these winds are about 100 miles per hour. we'll have jet stream winds tuesday into wednesday and even into thursday farther east at about 150 miles per hour.
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also, we've got 100-mile-per-hour surface winds. so winds are huge with this thing and which energy will be so. so tomorrow, who's under the gun with what will be very fast-moving storms? especially tomorrow overnight. storms themselves moving between 50 and 75 miles per hour. tomorrow afternoon, you can see where the bull's-eye will be for the afternoon. you can see this line coellising. and then through the afternoon,s into tonight, tomorrow night, tuesday at 10:00, memphis, shreveport, alexandria, virginia, alexandria, louisiana, it pulls eastward. by wednesday at 4:00, atlanta under the gun, birmingham, charlotte, raleigh, and then it moves to the coast. by thursday, the storm pushes out and the severe threat is done. we'll see it off the coast. a very strong two days of weather. >> good explanation, thank you. so what happened to the billions of dollars that the obama
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administration said would bring the country said high-speed rail. our own drew griffin has been investigating how some of that money went to a low-speed project. >> it's probably 5 1/2 to drive and 7 on the bus and 9 on the train. >> so the train is not your fastest route. >> not at all. no. music: "make someone happy" music: "make someone happy" ♪it's so important to make someone happy.♪ it's so important to make meone happy.♪ ♪make just one someone happy ♪and you will be happy too. so if ydead battery,t tire, need a tow or lock your keys in the car, geico's emergency roadside assistance is there 24/7. oh dear, i got a flat tire.
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president obama called it a great project to rebuild america. a $13 billion plan for high-speed rail. but some of that money went to the state of vermont, where there are no big cities, little congestion. as grew griffin of cnn's "special investigations unit"
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found out, very few rail passengers. >> reporter: it was a $50 million federal grant, tax dollars bringing high-speed rail to vermont. sleek, fast trains taking d.c.ers and new yorkers u. s up the tranquil countryside of the green mountain state. now all the work is done. listen and watch as those trains and your tax dollars whiz by. it's not that vermont has done anything wrong with the money. in fact, they did a good job. they came in on time, on budget. they even got the local freight company to kick in another 18 million dollars to improve the rails here. the real problem is hardly anybody is riding the rails in vermont. i could stand here almost all
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day long and not ever worry about getting hit by a train. you can jog on the tracks. go to lunch without looking. >> ever worry about getting hit by a train? >> no. >> reporter: it's now 3:00. still no train. 4:00. the sun would set before we would see our first train. 8:44. here it is. the first train we've seen all day. and at the busiest station in all of vermont, 11 people got off. no one got on. >> i'm coming here to visit friends. >> how many did you have? >> on board today? about 95. >> reporter: on average, the train from one end of vermont to the other carries less than 250 people a day. the next morning, the same train traveling south saw 13 people
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get on board, including andrew, who's making the trip to new york. how long will it take? >> 9 hours. >> reporter: a long time. >> it's probably 5 1/2 to drive and 7 on the bus and 9 on the train. >> reporter: so the train is not your fastest route. >> not at all. no. but you have the most room so i think it's the most comfortable. >> reporter: you wish comfortable. >> you wish it was more high speed? >> definitely. high speed rail. >> that's the other part of the story. the high speed part. what do you get for the $52 million share of the $70 million project? just 28 minutes. that's right. the new train is less than a half hour faster than the old train. in some areas, the train gets up to 79 miles an hour, but that's top speed and just for a portion of the trip. >> it's not necessarily high speed rail. it's the traditional sense that we're talking about. a little higher speed. >> yeah.
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we define it as higher speed rail. >> trini is with the department of transportation. >> the intent was not to get the japanese and european style bullet trains wizzing through. >> no. our train stops are too close together for us to get up to the speeds and then to decelerate by the time we get to the next station. >> if vermont never has high speed rail, why did it get money? rand will o' tool studies for the libertarian-leaning kato snead. >> they one criteria. had states done know environmental impact statement so that the projects would be shovel-ready? >> vermont had a project and the white house was ready to shovel out money. it didn't matter if the project was worthwhile. all that matters is if they were shovel-ready.
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>> as for the low ridership, ridership is up. trini said we just hit a bad day and if we waited until the late train friday night on martin luther king holiday weekend, we would sigh a crowd getting off at this station. >> we had 28 reservations into the station tomorrow night. >> 28? >> correct. >> all those people can fit on one bus. >> they could, but that's not their choice. it's rail. >> even more money from u.s. taxpayers for high speed rail. in reality that is making slow speed rail a little faster. cnn, essex junction, vermont. >> that's business here in washington. gatorade about to make a change in the flavors after a teenager
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uncovered an ingredient that is also used to prevent fires. we have details.
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drink flavors that is making one teen girl who took on the company very happy. lisa sylvester has details about what's going on. >> hi, there. they are searching gatorade flavors that will have a small change in the ingredients. this is bowing to public pressure online. now a 15-year-old girl is taking a victory lap. she is say volleyball player and self-described gatorade lover. after reading up on the ingredients, she dumped out the rest of the bottle she was drinking and launched an online petition asking the company to drop an additive. >> they're don't use it and think it's necessary. we can make it without this ingredient. >> it's bvo vegetable oil that keeps the ingredients from separating. they pointed out the ban in europe. it is patented by chemical companies as a name retardant
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according to scientific americans. >> a couple of studies have been done and one of them found it caused behavioral problems where the animals just behave differently in the laboratory tests. >> the animal tests were at higher doses. the food and drug administration said at the levels used, bvo presents no health risks on animal studies. or ead said while the products are safe, some have a negative perception of it in gatorade despite being permitted for use in american countries. they said they will switch to an alternative ingredient. these products also contain it. they said the products are safe clearly label and approved by the fda. it's the latest battle ground for food safety activists. the use of bpa and starbucks
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stopped using bug powder for ground up smoothies. they gave another pressure point to get companies to change products instead of relying on government scientists. >> you have the ability to reach out to all different bloggers and social networks to carry the message. >> gatorade said while they prompted the change, they had completed extensive taste tests. either way they are looking forward to having the favorite sports drink again. >> i didn't expect all the attention to be brought to it, but i'm grateful for it. >> cavanaugh reached 200,000 signatures by the time they made the announcement on friday and tomorrow by the way, it is her birthday and she turns 16. how about that for a sweet 16 birthday. >> she should be very, very proud indeed. thanks very much. happening now, a bipartisan
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breakthrough. senators unveil a new breakthrough, but will congress pass it? heading the te aleves. about the 2016 race for the white house. a medical shoerk with israel's former prime minister, airline yell sharon after seven years in a coma. sanjay gupta is standing by. a surprise in the gun debate. they shoot firearms. i'm wolf blitzer and you are in "the situation room." . in a compromise, politics are turned upside down. they believe the timing is right
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to pass comprehensive immigration reform. opponents are blasting the blueprint as a form of amnesty. our chief congressional correspondent is standing by and this is an important step. it's just a first step. >> that's right. senators admitted that they have a long way to go before writing this bill in march and the goal of passing this by the summer, just the fact that they agreed on principals and the thorny issue of citizenship is a big deal. this image alone is news worthy. >> this bipartisan blueprint is a major breakthrough. >> prominent liberals and conservatives saying it's time to deal with this. >> 11 million human beings who are here undocumented. >> the bipartisan framework would create a path to citizenship for immigrants and only after the borders are deemed secure. to secure the borders there would be an increase in drones, border agents and surveillance equipment.
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undocumented workers could only stay after passing a background checks paying fines in back taxes. >> if you got up and had fruit for breakfast, it was probably picked by an immigrant worker. >> they created employment verification and improved the process for needed workers. >> i am the most optimistic i have been in sometime. >> senators acknowledge they stood in the same spot before only to have hope collapse urn the weight of partisanship. >> you all mentioned the fact that you have been here before. >> in fact in 2007, senator kennedy stood with you and said 2007 is the year. >> we're must fix the broken system and strike while the iron is hot. >> why is this different? >> elections. elections. the republican party is losing the support of our citizens. we realized that many issues
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where we are in agreement, this is a preeminent issue with the citizens. barack obama won 71% of the latino vote and romney only 21%. he alienated them with comments like this. >> mccain himself did slightly better with 31% of the latino vote in 2008. participating in bipartisan talks almost cost him the gop nomination until he pulled back on the call for citizenship for undocumented workers. the message we must secure our borders. >> now? >> in espanol, vamanos. >> the reason why they wanted to unveil the proposal today was to
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preempt the president who was giving a speech on immigration tomorrow. the reason why is we were told they were worried about being associated with something that the president was going to do and alienating important republicans who are independent and separate for president obama. >> do we know what's in the proposal? >> we just got information as that piece was running from the chief correspondent. she learned that the president will not unveil a bill tomorrow. he will simply urge the process to keep moving. he will say he is encouraged by what happened in the senate. it was interesting. i was told members of the caucus went to the president and said please, please, we know you have a bill. please don't unveil it. according to jessica, he is not doing that. he is letting the process work its way and he doesn't clearly
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get the politics of interfering. he is using the bully pulpit. >> thanks very much. kate baldwin is here and digging deeper into the changes that affect a lot of people. >> from the politics to the people that it affects. possibly separated from their children. lisa sylvester talked to one of the families. what did this family say about the latest push on immigration reform? >> this gets to the heart of this whole issue. why it is so difficult to solve. people will say it's important to have the rule of law and not to reward rule breakers. very, very valid argument on the macro level. when you talk and get to the microlevel and talk to these individual families, what do you do with the families who are considered mixed status families where some of them are legal and some of them not.
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a close-knit family worried they could be torn apart. they are undocumented immigrants and her baby is a u.s. citizen and her brother received temporary status. they want to stay in the u.s., the place they call home. >> this is my country. i was a teenager when i came here. >> when marcella and her brother came to the united states, she was 16 and he was 12. they went to school here and graduated from high school and always lived in the shadows. ricardo is a premed student in college. as a teenager, he was diagnosed with bone cancer. several operations later, he was cancer-free. now he dreams of one day becoming a doctor. >> helping people. helping folks is what i always wanted, especially after my cancer. i think i owe the american people for giving me my life back. >> what stands in his way is his legal status. for now he is free from the
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threat of deportation under the deferred action program, but he wants to be a citizen. last june he joined several groups lobbying capitol hill for action on immigration reform. now with talk of a new bipartisan framework, he is optimistic. >> it's immigration reform with a practice. we are pretty much americans and each though we are undocumented. we are undocumented americans. >> many take issue with that. according to the latest cnn poll, 43% of americans say u.s. government policy should focus on deporting illegal imgrants and stopping more from coming in. >> deport all the people who are here illegally. what is your response to that? >> even government stated that's not even an option. these are people who are contributing to our economy and have lived here probably for 10 or 15 or 20 years. these are people who are truly
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americans. >> when you look at the family, you can see why the issue is so hard. >> i have a baby and i don't know what happened to me if they deport me to my country. >> she lives in fear and an impossible choice if she faced deportation. leave her child here in the united states where he could have a better life or stay with her and have him go to a country that neither of them knows. and on the front door of that family's home, two small american flags. ricardo plans to go back to capitol hill to continue lobbying congress and working as an activist on this issue. >> thank you. you can see more coverage on this latest immigration reform fight. go to cnn.com for more of that. we will continue to talk about that throughout the hour. while lawmakers deal with realities after the 2012 election, many junkies are already looking forward to the 2016 presidential race. >> me too. i'm always looking forward to
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that. the big question right now, was there deeper meaning to the president's decision to hold an unprecedented interview with hillary clinton? they were asked if there were political tea leaves to read. >> you guys in the press are inkorigible. i was inaugurated four days ago. you are talking about elections four years from now. >> i am as you know still secretary of state. i'm out of politics and forbidden from hearing these questions. >> we are joined by gloria boringer. >> forbidden? >> was this an endorsement of hillary clinton? the answer issy in.
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the president wanted to thank hillary clinton. nobody will suggest this. mr. president, how about you sit down and give a joint interview on 60 minutes? no. nobody suggested it. the president decided he wanted to do it. hillary clinton was sick. when he nominated john kerry. she could not stand there and he didn't get a chance to give her the kudos that he clearly felt she deserved. he decided he wanted to do it this way. the question of course we are all asking is, was this a huge slap at joe biden? i talked to biden people and reading their tea leaves, would they rather this interview had not taken place? probably. in the end, joe biden has a very visible role in the administration. he has four years to prove himself. he is in charge of gun control and going to be the closer on economic issues. i don't think there is any sense that joe biden how big downgraded as a result of this
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interview. it's clear the president wanted to thank hillary krint on and he did in a big way. >> you sat down with the vice president. what did he himself have to say about the future? >> i asked him whether he was ready to run against hillary clinton in 2016. take a look. >> i haven't made that judgment. hillary has not made that judgment. i tell you what. everything that should be done over the next two years that i should be part of would have to be done whether i run or don't run. if this administration is successful, whoever is running as a democrat is in a better position to make. if we are not, whoever runs as a nominee will be less likely to win. >> that's kind of a non-answer answer. i have to believe that if hillary clinton were to decide to run, i don't think joe biden
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would. she would be a very formidable opponent for him. i don't think you would want two people from the administration running against each other. they know each other well enough that they would talk about it. >> those will be interesting conversations. >> they are not strangers. >> they are open to it and thinking about it, but let's see what happens in the next year or two. >> quite a dance between the two. >> her camp has been loyal. there is lots of disagreements between the staffs of -- these were the hatfields and the mccoys. there is a lot of disagreements, but you don't see leaks coming out of the state department disparaging the white house. for that alone, the president really wanted to say a very big thank you. you don't see that a lot. he has been loyal. we will see what happens. >> when you say four years. iowa and new hampshire, three
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years from now. you have two years that will be making it. it's not that far. >> anyone who decides to run has to do it quickly. >> in fact, president obama is gone. >> thank you. >> president obama is trying to keep the conversation going about gun control. a lot of people are talking about his surprising remark on his own shooting experience. if you think this looks scary, wait until you see what happened after the snowmobiler fell. >> he has to jump away. >> look out! if there was a pill
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administration officials confirmed that on wednesday, the yemeni coast guard and the u.s. navy conducted an operation off the yemeni coast in yemeni waters, captured and intercepted a small dow fishing vessel and what they found was shocking. let me read some of what was found on board. they found a large cache of weapon with missiles that can shoot down aircraft. c 4 military grade explosives and 122 military shells. bomb-making equipment and the whole lot of it. a boarding party from both of yemeni and the american side approached this small dow, boarded it and took control of the material. they are now investigating whether iran might have been responsible for this. they are looking for the documentation for the ship trying to figure out where it came from.
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>> glad they intercepted the ship. thanks very much. >> president obama got input on easing gun violence from law enforcement official who is deal with and death situations every day. >> the talks came on the heels of surprising statements about the president's personal experience shooting guns. let's bring in jessica yellin. >> president obama began week two of his second term by keeping his vow to keep up the pressure on his top priority, fighting the effort to fight gun violence. >> at the white house, president obama continued his push to change the nation's gun safety laws. >> to prevent something like newtown or something from happening again. >> police chiefs and sheriffs from major cities and those impacted by recent gun violence. >> if law enforcement officials are dealing with this stuff every day can come to some basic
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consensus in terms of basic steps, congress will be paying attention to them and will be able to make progress. >> around the tanl, officials from sandy hook, o roara, colorado and oak creek, wisconsin. this police chief vowed action. >> something has to be done now. >> the president said his top priorities include universal background checks and a ban on high capacity clips and improving school safety and mental health assistance and pressed for the passage of the ban with a heavy lift even by the sponsor. >> this never has been easy. this is the hardest of the hard. >> senator feinstein also took a shot at the nra whose vice president will appear before her committee. >> the nra is venal. they come after you, they put
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together large amounts of money to defeat you. >> the president said he has done shooting of his own. he told the magazine at camp david they do skeet shooting. not the girls, but guests of mine and i have a respect for the roots of hunting that trace back for generations. the nra made a statement and responded the second amendment is not about shooting skeet and not a tradition. it's a fundamental right upheld by the u.s. supreme court. >> now at the white house briefing i asked whether there photographs of the president skeet shooting and the white house said the president does not go to camp david to get photographs taken. he goes to relax. on the larger issue of gun safety, i am told by white house official that is the president plans to ton do events promoting
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this issue. it is one of the top priorities. he will be out pushing on immigration reform. again, white house officials insist to me that they believe he can press on both immigration reform and gun control at the same time. >> i'm sure he will. thanks very much for that. jessica yellin. anderson cooper is tackling the issue with a town hall. guns under fire. can there be a solution to the gun problem? find out thursday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern. anderson will be at george washington university for the town hall. >> up next, britain's queen elizabeth is not going anywhere. another long serving monarch is calling it quits. ♪ [ male announcer ] when we built the cadillac ats from the ground up
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. four people are under arrest in kexz connection with this weekend's deadly fire at a brazilian nightclub. we have more on the top stories with a horrendous story. >> two arrested are the club's owners other two are members of the band who were performing. it coincided with a pyrotechnics show that may have caused the fire. 231 people died and many of them because of smoke inhalation. others were trampled at the exits. funerals started today, the first of brazil's three days of mourning for the victims. a royal shake-up is looming in the netherlands. queen buy tricks. her oldest son william alexander will be the first king in more than a century.
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the 74-year-old queen is following a dutch tradition. both her mother and grandmother advocated around the same age. president obama today welcomed the nba champions miami heat to the white house and after talking basketball, the president pointed out that the big name players like lebron james and chris bosh could do something else that is special. >> i don't know all these guys, but i do know lebron and duane and chris. one of the things i'm proudest of is they take their roles as fathers seriously. for all the young men who are looking autopsy to them all the time and for them to see somebody who cares about the kids and there for them day in and day out, that's a good message to send and we are proud of them for that. >> lebron's tourn speak and the player who has it all couldn't
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believe where he was. >> three kids from chicago and dallas and michigan and ohio and south dakota and miami. we're in the white house right now. mama, i made it. >> pretty cute line. mama, i made it. no matter how big he gets, he can be awe struck. >> they could have gone to the back yard. >> they play a lot of basketball. he plays a lot. >> he's good too. >> you like the miami heat? >> i like the wizards. we beat the miami heat. we haven't beat a lot of teams, but we beat them. battle lines are forming right now over the new bipartisan blueprint unveiled. stand by for a heated debate on
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the pros and cons and whether it gets past. we're all having such a great year in the gulf, we've decided to put aside our rivalry. 'cause all our states are great. and now is when the gulf gets even better. the beaches and waters couldn't be more beautiful. take a boat ride or just lay in the sun. enjoy the wildlife and natural beauty. and don't forget our amazing seafood. so come to the gulf, you'll have a great time.
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>> president obama lays out his second term vision for comprehensive immigration reform tomorrow. >> the senators who unveiled a blueprint today say they are not stealing his thunder. in fact the president cheered them on. the bipartisan plan includes a path to citizenship. immigrants have to undergo a background check and pay a fine and back taxes before gaining legal status. all that is contingent in securing america's borders. to accomplish that, the proposal calls for increased use of drones and improved infrastructure. it would create an employment verification system that holds them accountable for undocumented workers. >> they hold views for comprehensive reform and the blueprint unveiled on the senate
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today. loretta sanchez is here in d.c. the president of the federation for american immigration reform. thanks to both of you for coming in. let me start off with you. a pathway to citizenship for 11 million or 12 million illegal immigrants here in the united states. isn't that a form of amnesty? >> well, first of all, we are going to have regulations, i believe, about what the qualifications that they need to meet. they are going to need to speak english, for example. they are going to have to pay a fine for having probably gone around the system and being here. of course if they have anything criminal in their background, they are not going to be eligible. there is going to be a high bar for these people to meet and it's going to be a time of residency required before they have a chance at citizenship here. i do believe they are already
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here. we have realized in the congress and even the republican side has realized you can't ask them to self deport. you can't deport them or incarcerate them all. it's important for our country to move forward for homeland security reasons and from a family values standpoint. from the economy. in our interest. all in all, i hope this bipartisanship that is showing the senate will come up with details that will be acceptable to a majority of the people in the house also. >> dan stein, it's not liberal democrats and a lot of conservatives. marco rubio of florida, john mccain and lindsay graham were all out there saying the time has come to deal with this in a comprehensive way. >> we heard this before. i have video of chuck schumer saying this will be the last amnesty. we will do it again. look at the debates in 2006. this is the only time.
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marco rubio said he was not going to support a path to citizenship. they said they were not going to support the program. we have a labor market and we have job displacement and see a lot of americans who were struggling. how is this by giving amnesty and setting off a tidal wave and going to help the average american get a job and better wages and improved working conditions. how will it help the fiscal situation? the bill is a skeletal draft. these guys go into it holding arm and arm like they are going in the tunnel of love. it's like they have been in a lion's den. when you get down to the details, what you see is all the enforcement provisions and things we have on the books anyway. if the president would enforce the law, it's a big bill with a prospect of enforcement which with this administration's track record is illosery. >> at this point it is a bipartisan push.
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a strong republican said part of the reason behind the push has to do with elections and elections matter. listen to this. >> elections. elections. the republican party is losing the support of our hispanic citizens. we realize that there many issues in which we think we are in agreement with our hispanic citizens. this is a preem nent issue. >> if this is the reality, the political reality and simply the reality, what can you do? what's the other option? >> this is the water shed. what they have is a problem with low income voters, 50,000 and under and single women and because immigration is increasing the population of people with less skill and less education, they have trouble reaching that with an effective message. the business groups want to increase that population dramatically overtime.
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even though that's a population voting for the bigger spending. >> if you don't support what i am saying. >> mccain was mr. amnesty. both o bam and mccain said we got support. now ultimately we are at the same place. where is the enforcement? >> let's let the congresswoman respond. >> let's talk about enforcement. i sat on the board of security committee of homeland security since the inception. i have been the chair woman of that. we see candace miller, republican, who represents michigan. we have increased our border patrol from about 500 people to now 22,000 people in that agency. we have seen an increase in agents and the majority have gone on the southern border. terrorist who is have come across have actually come from the northern border. we have problems with the
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coastlines. everybody points to the latino community and the reality is that we want enforcement to ensure that we know who is coming in and out of the country. one of the stipulations that the senate put in is that we cover the overstaying of visas. that's that is important to do. the u.s. visa program which was a visit program that both the bush and the obama administration put in place. they only did let's check the visas when people come in. they didn't do the let's check them. we need to get that and understand that for example, the 9/11 hijackers were actually overstayed visas. we have done a lot of enforcement. this president deported more people than president bush did. we have done a lot of enforcement and we'll do more, but we need to give status to the people who are part of our community already. >> it looks like you may be on the losing sides of this debate
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given the political atmosphere after this election. >> keep in mind if obama wants to get something done, he would go with a piece meal approach. if it's omni bus, it's ominous. >> you read his article in the "wall street journal." >> voters will vote republican if you give them amnesty. it doesn't work. >> he got 44% of the vote in 2004. >> our job is to make sure reform means we fix the problem that brought us to where we are today. we don't have to do this every years. we have the beginning of a dialogue andy we are a long way from the finish line. >> one thing you need to see in a comprehensive bill. >> mandatory e verify. the open field searches. we are not going down the guessworker program unless we appeal the ban. the jordan commission over 30 years of saying we have to get the preferences.
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>> the president of the federation for american reform. loretta sanchez is the u.s. congresswoman from california. a democrat. this is just beginning. after sench years of being sem conscious, ariel sharon is showing what is being described as significant brain activity. i will ask dr. sanjay gupta if that can lead to a recovery. so at university of phoenix we're working with a growing list of almost two thousand corporate partners - companies like microsoft, american red cross and adobe - to create options for you. not only that, we're using what we learn from these partners to shape our curriculum, so that when you find the job you want you'll be a perfect fit. let's get to work. to help protect your eye health as you age...
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the victims of super storm sandy isifiablely on the way. the u.s. senate passed the emergency relief bill by a vote of 62-36. the new spending measures made it through the house and now is going to go directly to the president. we all know he will be signing that into law. >> the folks need that money and need it quickly. >> a medical shocker has doctors scrambling to figure out what it means. an 84-year-old man has been semi conscious for years is showing what is described as significant brain activity. more fascinating because the patient is ariel sharon, the former israeli that who suffered a stroke in 2006. dr. sanjay gupta is joining us. we are told when doctors saw the latest results, they were silent and in shock. you are a neurosurgeon. how shocked were you when he shows significant brain activity? >> the terms really matter here.
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what we have been hearing for sometime was that he was in a persistent vegetative state. that's clearly not the sort of description that they are saying for him now. you look at go o this and thought he was in a vegetative state and we see evidence of britney activity. when we talked to the doctors, over the past few years, he has been having sleep wake cycles and he will go to sleep and wake up and eat. his eyes will open and close. again, the terms matter. that's not a persistent vegetative state. more of a minimally conscious state. persistent vegetative and minerally conscious. that's a better description. that fits with what they saw in the mri. >> seven years in this kind of state. it's not a persistent vegetative
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state or a coma. is there a chance an 84-year-old like this would recover and starts talking and starts responding to questions? >> there have been a couple of cases. it's pretty rare as you might guess. the terms matter because it's not clear the state they were in prior to being able to wake up and become more. we have this point in time and did the experiments or test where is they show homes, for example. no lighting up. when he saw a picture of his own home, there was lighting up. they took his son's voice and garbled it. no activity, but when they left the voice normal, he activity in the brain. there was recognition and processing and something going on there. the thing is it has been seven years. that's a long period of time. someone in that state for seven
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years, now you are asking yourself are they likely to improve at this point? as tough as it is to hear for a lot of people, that's unlikely. if he had the mra after the first couple of months, this could be an optimistic sign. it is still sfwog know this brain activity is there, but i don't know whether it will translight into something where he is more interactive and functional and answering questions. >> joining us with a good explanation. appreciate it very much. >> you got it. >> still ahead, there no photos to prove it, but president obama said he likes to go skeet shooting. what knew? the man who got that surprising bit of information out of the president. 
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president obama's revelation that he liked to go skeet shooting raised questions and definitely raised eyebrows. >> for has. a surprising bit of information that came out during the president's interviews with the new republic magazine. the publisher and the editor in chief of the new republic magazine, thanks for coming in. >> thanks for having me. >> congratulations on the new, new republic. a new look. very glossy. i will get to that. i want to talk about your view with the president of the united states. i learned he actually likes to go shooting at camp david. we do skeet shooting and not the girls, but often times guests of mine go up and i have a profound respect for trat additions that trace back for generations. does he believe he can get gun
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control measures through the current congress? >> i think so. the answer that he gave around skeet shooting was surprising to me because we knew that he fired weapons on secret service firing ranges and things like that in the past, but the idea of him going up to camp david and shooting regularly to the president that i at least hadn't seen and i think a lot of others hadn't either. he talked in the interview about how he wants to go about seeing gun control passed. what he really focuses on is getting folks who don't own guns to actually understand the world view of those who do and vice versa. which i think is, you know, certainly an ambisching goal, but it still doesn't get to the question of how. how is he going to get congressional republicans to come on board with a lot of these proposals? >> and that's looking forward into this second term. you're a longtime and big
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supporter of president obama. in this interview, you talk quite a bit about lessons learned from the first term. so what do you think he should do differently in this second term? >> well, you know, he said very clearly in the interview that they didn't do a great job communicating their values and their program in the first term, and he wanted to do a better job in the second. which i think is true. but you know, i'm sort of moved over to the journalistic side as publisher and editor in chief of the new republic. what i want to see us do is really keep the focus in the white house on their toes. there's lots of questions about what they're going to do in this second term, particularly given how aggressive they're being and the expectations they're saiding. they're talking about immigration reform, gun control, climate change, and of course there's ongoing fiscal battles that keep playing out month after month in the congress. so you know in some ways i feel like they're entering their second term and are really, you
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know, are really setting the bar quite high. which is ambitious. so we'll see if they can meet it. >> another thing that jumped out at me from your interview with the president, football, i know he's a huge sports fan. this is super bowl week. he said i'm a big football fan, but i have to tell you, if i had a son, i'd have to think long and hard before i let him play football and those of us who love the support are going to have to wrestle with the fact it's probably going to change gradually to reduce the violence. that was surprising for him to take a firm position on that. >> this was a very exacting moment in the interview. for most of the interview, the president was speaking in his characteristic pace, slow, thoughtful, careful. but when we asked this question about the culture of violence and the love of football, he very quickly and directly said that he didn't know if he had a son whether he would allow him to play.
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he's clearly a big fan of football. he talks about it all the time. he also seems to see a difference between professional football on one hand and coll e collegiate on the other, with the idea that professional players are well compensated, they have a union, they're grown men, as he says in the interview, and can make decis n decisions about their own health, where in college, it's a lilt more complicated. it's clearly something he thinks about personally and is not shy to talk about, to speak out on. >> chris hughes, publisher and editor in chief at the "new republic." actual print copies of magazines. >> a dying art. >> unlike the publishers of n s newsweek. he has a commitment to what we like to see. >> good luck. >> thank you, guys. >> wait until you hear the story behind a funeral procession that stopped at a burger king's drive
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driv driv drive-thru window. who else but our jeanne moos will have the story for you. look what mommy is having. mommy's having a french fry. yes she is, yes she is. [ bop ] [ male announcer ] could've had a v8. 100% vegetable juice, with three of your daily vegetable servings in every little bottle. with three of your daily vegetable servings ♪
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[ male announcer ] one pill each morning. 24 hours. zero heartburn. in our video of the day, extreme sports are dangerous, but extreme sports get very dangerous for spectators.
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take a look at what happened last night at the winter x games in aspen, colorado, when an australian snow mobiler tried to do a back flip. >> attempting the jack. oh! oh, had to jump away from the sled. look out. >> uh-oh. throttle is stuck. >> scary as that looked, and it sure does, we're told there was only one minor injury after this. and the snow mobiler apparently walked away unharmed. oh, my goodness. i don't need to see that again. that is scary. wow. >> thank god everybody was okay. finally, a world war ii veteran goes out in style by way of the drive -through window at his favorite place to get a burger. >> reporter: it wasn't exactly a whopper of a funeral. it was a whopper junior. this is the story of a world war
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ii vet laid to rest, but not before the hearst and the entire funeral procession went to a burger king drive-thru on the way to the cemetery. >> it was a joke and then it became a reality. >> reporter: the diseased loved fast food, especially whopper juniors. one of his daughters told the daily record that her dad's version of eating healthy was the lettuce on the whopper jr. after he died of a heart attack at the age 88, the funeral director asked the family if there was any way they would like to personalize the service. >> and we said, well, we ought to get him one final burger. >> they told burger king to prepare about 40 whopper junniers paid for by the family. >> i think it's great that we had something that that's their final thing they're going to do. >> one by one, the cars in the